What Is Web 3 Exactly and Why Should You Care?

Since Web3 emerged in 2014 as a term to describe the latest Internet technology that enables decentralized consensus, it leverages machine learning, artificial intelligence, and blockchain to achieve real-world human communication. It has now come to describe an entire ecosystem of public blockchains, applications, and even design philosophies. The icing on the cake is that web 3.0 not only allows individuals to own their data but they will be compensated for their time spent on the web. In this blog post, we cover nine ideas that describe Web3 with plenty of examples to understand these ideas in practice.

To understand Web 3, it makes sense to understand what came before. The first version of the Internet – known as Web 1 – arrived in the late 1990s and comprised a collection of links and homepages. Websites weren’t particularly interactive. You couldn’t do much apart from reading things and publishing basic content for others to read.

 

Web 1: The read-only (1989-2005)

Web 1.0, also called the Static Web, was the first and most reliable internet in the 1990s despite only offering access to limited information with little to no user interaction. This initial version of the Web was built on open-source protocols such as TCP, IP, SMTP, and of course HTTP. Back in the day, creating user pages or even commenting on articles wasn’t a thing. Web 1.0 didn’t have algorithms to sift internet pages, which made it extremely hard for users to find relevant information. 

 

Web 2: The read-write (2005-present)

The Social Web, or Web 2, made the internet a lot more interactive, built using the free and open-source protocols of the internet like Javascript, HTML5, CSS3, etc., which enabled startups to build interactive web platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, Wikipedia and many more.

This paved the way for both social networks and user-generated content production to flourish since data can now be distributed and shared between various platforms and applications.

Another subtle shift happened, too. Rather than maintaining your own server to display your websites, Web2 companies paid the bills. In exchange, however, they also created a silo of user data, behavior, and actions to construct a social graph that is very valuable to advertisers. In Web2, the individual user is the product.

 

Web 3: The read-write-own (yet to come)

Web 3 is the next stage of the web evolution that would make the internet more intelligent or process information with near-human-like intelligence through the power of AI systems that could run smart programs to assist users.

Ownership for Web3 means that the builders, operators, and users of a platform own a piece of what they use. Bitcoin and Ethereum are the earliest examples: in return for updating the ledger and keeping other actors honest, they receive a reward in BTC or ETH in exchange for securing the network. Token-based networks built on Ethereum and other smart contract blockchains have even introduced new models of ownership that are not necessarily the same as a cooperative or shareholder equity model. For example, ownership might be given in the form of a token provided for a service, such as providing liquidity for a trade, and that same token could also be used for governing future changes to the network. The grand vision is that participants of any network will be able to own a piece of the products and services that they use every day. 

 

What’s Unique About Web 3

Web3 will make the web more intelligent, secure and transparent, resulting in more efficient browsing and effective machine-human interaction.

    1. Ownership of Data

The end-users will get the most significant advantage of data encryption to protect their information from disclosure. The encryption will be unbreakable in any given circumstance. It will prevent large organizations like Google, Facebook, and Amazon from controlling or using people’s personal information for their own interests. Hence, users will gain complete ownership and privacy of their information.

    2. Ubiquity

Ubiquity means being or having the capacity to be everywhere, especially at the same time. Decentralized data storage will ensure that the data is accessible to users in any circumstance. Users will get multiple backups, which benefits them even in the event of server failures. 

In other words, omnipresent. In that sense, Web 2.0 is already ubiquitous since a Facebook user can instantly capture an image and share it, as long as they have access to the social media platform. Web 3 simply takes this a step further by making the internet accessible to everyone anywhere, at any time. At some point, internet-connected devices will no longer be concentrated on computers and smartphones like in Web 2.0 technology will bring forth a plethora of new types of smart devices.

Additionally, no entity or government organization will have the ability to stop any services or websites. Therefore, the possibility of account suspension and denial of distributed services will be reduced.

    3. Enhanced Data Processing

Web 3 is beneficial for problem-solving and intensive knowledge creation tasks. It utilizes artificial intelligence to filter out valuable information from a huge quantity of data. Although Web 2.0 presents similar capabilities, it is still predominantly human-based, which opens up room for corrupt behaviors such as biased product reviews, rigged ratings, etc. Therefore, the internet needs AI to learn how to distinguish the genuine from the fake in order to provide reliable data. As AI advances, it will ultimately be able to provide users with the best filtered and unbiased data possible. Users will also benefit from its ability to conduct client demand forecasting and personalized customer service, necessary for flourishing businesses.

 

The Final Thoughts 

The idea behind web 3 is to make searches on the Internet much faster, easier, and more efficient to process even complex search sentences in no time. Web 3 has neither centralized databases that store the application state nor a centralized web server where the backend logic resides. Instead, there is a blockchain to build apps on a decentralized state machine and maintained by anonymous nodes on the web. The logic of your applications is defined in smart contracts, written by the developers, which are deployed onto the decentralized state machine. 

We are heading towards an Internet where people will have complete control over their data and privacy, and permit companies to use their data (or not). All this will be powered by blockchain.

Web 3 will accelerate the honest and transparent use of user data, from personalized search results to cross-platform development tools and the use of 3D graphics. The web will become more immersive and interactive.

 

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